Physical Activity And Health

Physical Activity And Health

Physical Activity plays an important role in achieving good health and well being of a person. Inspite of the continuous efforts of the medical profession, the message has not been put across in an effective way. It is a natural human tendency to try to achieve maximum benefit with little effort and exertion.

Daily exercise increases fitness level. A new study shows that regular exercise increases one's fitness level. Old thinking was to work out in a sweat-filled gym for hours a day. Now researchers say that even short bouts of activity, like 10 minute's walk daily can surely increase your fitness level. Use every opportunity to walk. At the end of the day it all adds up to better fitness. Before you even get out of bed in the morning, do ten stomach crunches while lying flat on your mattress. You may increase them gradually upto fifty to get your stomach flatter. It also increases flexibility of joints and the spine especially in the elderly.

Effects of physical activity on health :

  1. Lowers mortality from any cause.
  2. Reduces risk of developing Coronary Heart Disease.
  3. Reduces mortality following a Heart Attack.
  4. Reduces possible risk of Stroke.
  5. Lowers Blood Pressure.
  6. Greater weight loss than dieting alone.
  7. Reduces risk of Heart Attack in Obese patients.
  8. Lowers mortality for Cancer of Colon.
  9. Lowers incidence of non-insulin diabetes.
  10. Better management of insulin dependent diabetes.
  11. Produces higher bone mass density and fewer osteoporotic fractures.
  12. Improves muscle strength and flexibility in elderly people.
  13. Less age related deterioration.
  14. Reduces mild anxiety and depression.
  15. Improves memory in elderly people.
  16. Improves self-esteem and confidence in performing daily tasks in elderly people.

Facts :

  • Nearly half of the young people aged between 2 - 21 are not vigorously active on a regular basis.
  • Physical activity declines dramatically with age during adolescence.
  • Approximately 25% of the adults in developing countries are not active at all.
  • 70 - 75% of the men and women between 16 - 75 years of age are sedentary or moderately active.
  • There are no short cuts and physical activity is a must for any kind of health benefits.

New Guidlines :

  • Physical activity need not be strenuous to achieve health benefits.
  • Accumulation of several shorter bouts of exercise, say 3 bouts of 10 minutes, may be as beneficial as 30 minutes of sustained moderate activity.
  • Adults who maintain a regular routine of physical activity that is longer duration or of greater intensity are likely to derive greater benefit. However, because the risk of injury also increases with greater activity, care should be taken to avoid excessive activity.
  • Previously sedentary people who begin physical activity programs should start with short sessions of say, 5 - 10 minutes of physical activity and gradually build up to the desired level of activity.
  • Adults with chronic health problems, such as Coronary Heart problems, diabetes or obesity or who are at high risk for these conditions should first consult their doctor before beginning a new program. All persons over 40 years of age who plan to begin a new program of vigorous activity should consult a doctor to be sure that they do not have heart disease or other health problems.

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